The above is an article that reveals the response rates across different races re: online dating, and the following are my thoughts.
A popular sentiment is often that being attracted to someone is subjective and therefore not open to discussion or criticism. However, there has to be a difference between only responding to one race based on attraction, and only hiring one race because of racism, right?
“We can’t help who find attractive when it comes to race”, maybe not. But, it is important to evaluate the politics of desire. We have to look at a society and see who is generally viewed as attractive and who is not, and why. It is important for a person to look at who they generally see as attractive, why they have those attachments and really begin to probe their own understandings. Why don’t you feel black women are attractive, for example? Would that change if you were in a different environment? What types of associations do you hold regarding black women on a less conscious level?
Additionally, this people seem to assert that negative associations (being black and therefore inferior) is racist, but positive associations are fine. They are not. Asian women are often deemed attractive because they are smaller in stature, more decidedly ‘feminine’ and thought culturally to be more submissive. We are not just talking about racism, we are talking about stereotypes of all kind, and they are all equally problematic.
Green eyes are fine if it they are green eyes, but if they are green eyes that are attractive because they are reminiscent/only attached to white women and white women are the ideal of beauty, it’s problematic.
The issue here is some people are attracted to the opposite of what they are told by society, or their parents or friends. It is often very subjective, but there are clear patterns that follow ‘racial logic’, unfortunately. Maybe we can’t change who we are attracted to, but if we truly begin to understand our motivations and ideals, maybe that will help us be less biased with our hiring….it’s all related, the problem is, it’s never clear how much.
Lastly, it’s important to understand that racial categories i.e. whiteness, are not stable categories, who we understand or view as white is constantly shifting as well (see the Irish in North America today versus 200 years ago, or Jews in North America today versus 50 years ago). Lastly, it’s important to recognize that white is not always the ideal of beauty or attraction, depending on when you are.
Anyways, those are just some thoughts!